Meet Zack - the dog who protects elephants

Zack taking a break in the shade with one of his handlers, Lawrence Loree

Zack taking a break in the shade with one of his handlers, Lawrence Loree

At 17 months old, Belgian Malinois dog Zack has boundless energy, and loves to play. Just as well, because he has got one of the toughest, most unique canine professions in the world. Zack is NRT's newest member of the anti-poaching units, and will help to tackle suspected elephant and rhino poachers, as well as stock theft and road banditry in northern Kenya. 

Zack with his handlers Lawrence Loree (left) and Joseph Kisio (right)

Zack with his handlers Lawrence Loree (left) and Joseph Kisio (right)

Zack will be based at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, with their well-established K-9 unit. He arrived in Kenya with two other dogs, Maxo and Jack, from the Malpeet K9 Academy in Wales, UK, who have been purchased by Lewa.

Maxo, Jack and Zack will join Lewa’s two bloodhounds to help protect wildlife and communities in northern Kenya. As part of the partnership between Lewa and NRT, bloodhounds ‘Tipper’ and ‘Tony’ are regularly sent to assist in cases of stock theft and poaching in NRT conservancies. Their noses can track a scent up to 300 hours old (that’s like you being able to smell someone’s perfume 13 days after they left the area!) While Dutch herder and Belgian Malinois breeds also have sensitive smell, their greatest strength is their ability to effectively detain criminals on the run.

The dogs have already started to bond with their new handlers, and are getting used to the special boots they have to wear to protect their paws from the thorny scrub of the African bush!